The appeal behind open-plan living is understandable, but in all their sociable benefits, these spaces are at risk of feeling disconnected, cramped, and, in some cases, empty. This, however, isn't the case in Cruz Beckham's LA home, where he has seemingly mastered an open-plan living room by creating a home with a designer-approved flow between varying spaces.
Cruz and Brooklyn are pictured in the white-painted dining area, complete with a dark wooden table, rug, and pendant lighting. The area looks onto the living room, where another rug anchors the sofa and ensures the space feels separate from where they dine.
Opting for white paint, area rugs, and pendant lighting may seem like simple design quirks, but as designers explain, they're particularly influential in open-plan settings such as this.
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Firstly, Martin Waller, the founder of global design brand Andrew Martin, comments on the power of lighting, making each zone feel distinct without interrupting the flow.
'Use statement lighting to create different zones that each have a purpose. Hang pendant lighting over dining areas and use task lamps in corners of the room to create cozy areas for reading,' he says. In the same way, rugs are an age-old way to differentiate certain areas from one another.
Using different patterned and colored rugs in our dining and living spaces reminds us of their separate uses and allows us to feel as though our room has multiple areas, even when they share a space.
Martin Waller is the founder of the globally renowned design house Andrew Martin, and he remains at the heart of the brand to this day. The London-based designer has shaped furniture, fabric, and wallpaper trends through his experimentative designs – based on a variety of cultures. At the turn of the millennium, he published his bestselling design book Fusion Interiors (now available on Amazon).
However, Cruz's use of lighting isn't the only technique designers recommend to achieve a spacious open-plan area. They're also turning to a time-honored paint trick to create a sense of cohesion in the space.
'The most obvious choice for making a small room appear bigger is opting for a bright, neutral shade like white. White will reflect the light and keep your kitchen/living space bright and uplifting,' adds Kelly Collins, an interior designer and head of creative at Swyft Home. While Cruz's space is by no means compact, this works equally well in small living rooms where an open plan is used to create a more spacious feeling.
'Painting the ceiling in the same color as the walls will draw the eye up and make the ceiling look higher than it really is – making the whole room look bigger in the process,' Kelly says.
'Paint your woodwork and any feature moldings a shade darker than any color on the walls. This way, the architectural bones of the room become more prominent, and the walls recede a little.'
We're buying our way into this look with these Cruz-inspired picks below.
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Megan is the News and Trends Editor at Homes & Gardens. She first joined Future Plc as a News Writer across their interiors titles, including Livingetc and Real Homes. As the News Editor, she often focuses on emerging microtrends, sleep and wellbeing stories, and celebrity-focused pieces. Before joining Future, Megan worked as a News Explainer at The Telegraph, following her MA in International Journalism at the University of Leeds. During her BA in English Literature and Creative Writing, she gained writing experience in the US while studying in New York. Megan also focused on travel writing during her time living in Paris, where she produced content for a French travel site. She currently lives in London with her antique typewriter and an expansive collection of houseplants.
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